Former Arsenal and Everton defender blasts Michael Keane

Former Arsenal and Everton defender Martin Keown has blasted Michael Keane and says he should be dropped from the Toffees’ starting eleven.

The £30 million summer signing from Burnley endured a torrid evening as Everton were beaten 3-0 by Atalanta in the Europa League on Thursday.

Keown told BT Sport that he believes manager Ronald Koeman needs to shake up his defence, starting with Keane.

“It was almost as if they were demonstrating how good they were these players,” Keown said.

“Keane is just not getting tight there – I don’t know what it is with the player.

“I think he is going to have to leave Keane out.

“He’s not doing anything with any real purpose, he’s not getting across. ‘Is it my ball? Is it my teammate’s?’

“What is Everton’s best partnership? Is it (Phil) Jagielka and (Ashley) Williams?

“And we take Keane out to protect him because they looked all over the place at the back.

“There are real problems for Koeman to sort out.”

Keane has looked badly out-of-sorts over the past few games and a spell on the sidelines could be just the wake-up call the 24-year-old needs.

Koeman’s decision to sign the centre-back on the strength of one decent season in the Premier League is looking questionable at the moment, although Keane is not being helped by the form of many of his teammates.

The former Manchester United player has time on his side to justify his price tag, but Koeman must decide whether it would be prudent to take him out of the limelight for the time being.

Angry Everton fans react on Twitter after Atalanta defeat: Koeman needs to go
Odds update: Top Championship pundit tips Leeds United to win again